With the Flames officially eliminated from post-season contention Wednesday night despite a dominant 6-1 victory over the Oilers, rookie forwards Lance Bouma and Greg Nemisz were re-assigned to the AHL Heat yesterday, where they will aim to help the team make a final push for a playoff spot in the Northern Division.
Both players played with and against mostly bottom-six competition, both recorded one point (an assist) and both finished their respective stints with the big club a -1 with single-digits in shots on goal--the only real difference being that Bouma played ten more games at the NHL level than did Nemisz.
I know it's a small sample size, but I decided to take a brief look at both players' underlying numbers during their time with the Flames this season to get some insight into what we could be working with in the future (numbers from Behind the Net after the jump).
Lance Bouma (3rd Round, 78th Overall--2008)
During his 16 games with the Flames, Bouma had one of the easier ZoneStart ratios of all forwards on the club at 58%, although he finished in the offensive zone less than 50% of the time. He had the easiest QualComp and managed a Corsi rate of +11.49/60. The Flames' on-ice EV SV% was pretty good when Bouma and his linemates were on (.925), but their SH% was fairly bleak (4.76), resulting in a PDO of 97.3.
Bouma played an average of 5:52/game, all at even strength, and it's kind of a shame he doesn't get to play in the Flames' final game against the Canucks; in two games against Vancouver this season, Bouma played an average of 7:44, had three shots, five hits, two blocked shots, and was +1. Overall, Bouma rarely looked out of place, but he wasn't spectacular--nor is he expected to be; he was managed very carefully in his first appearance in the big leagues, which is just fine by me.
Greg Nemisz (1st Round, 25th Overall--2008)
Evaluating Nemisz is a bit tougher because he played so few games. In six games, he had five shots and collected one assist in Wednesday's win over the Edmonton Oilers. He had by far the easiest ZoneStart ratio of all Flames forwards at a whopping 76.5%, and like Bouma, also finished in the O-Zone under 50% of the time. He finished with a slightly tougher QualComp than Bouma and a Corsi rate of -1.96/60, playing an average of 5:05/game, all at EV.
Like Bouma, the Flames' on-ice SH% was not great when Nemisz was playing (5.88), but their EV SV% was worse (.895). I added up Nemisz's EV scoring chances using Kent's data, and by my count, he finished -4 (7 chances for, 11 against). Nemo's numbers aren't very re-assuring given the doubts that are already floating around the Flames 'sphere about the former first-rounder, but like I said--six games is a very small sample size.
Nemisz and Bouma will join the Abbotsford Heat on the road when they take on the Grand Rapids Griffins tonight at 4PM PST/5PM MST.